There are an increasing number of children walking the camino with their parents, although it is unusual to see family groups outside the school holidays. There are often school and scout parties of teenagers walking the last 100km from Sarria. Most refuges will accept children and some will be able to accommodate families in separate rooms if these are available.
Babies and toddlers can be carried in robust buggies or prams, or in adapted backbacks, although you will have to consider the possibility of local detours to avoid areas of difficult terrain and plan for the extra energy required to push or carry children and the limits this may place on your daily mileage. We would not recommend cycling with a child in a trailer behind you, since they are very exposed to fast-moving traffic and exhaust fumes. The heat may also restrict the time you can spend walking with a child. In remoter areas the availability of babyfood and nappies might be limited.
Older children can walk or cycle, although the distance they can cover each day may be quite restricted, depending on their age and energy levels, and by the heat and terrain. They may also be bored by lack of activities and the fact that they are unlikely to meet other children of their own age.
The best advice we can offer is to try some walking or biking with your children, starting with day-trips, then a weekend or a week while camping or hostelling, at a cooler time of year, nearer home. Then you can decide if your family is ready to tackle the Camino.
Confraternity of Saint James,
27 Blackfriars Road, London SE1 8NY, United Kingdom.
Tel: (+44) (0)20 7928 9988
Company Limited by Guarantee, Registered no. 4096721 — UK Registered Charity no. 1091140
Founded in 1983 to promote the pilgrim routes to Santiago de Compostela
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